Resilient special-needs pets deserve support

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Anyone who has had the pleasure of owning a pet knows how special they are. Some are more special than others. Mac's Mission, a non-for-profit rescue, has introduced the public to some special-needs animals who are just waiting for a loving home. Special-needs pets have a way of capturing our hearts and teaching us lessons.

Rochelle Steffen of the mission told the Southeast Missourian that some of the pets deal with issues like a heart murmur, partial paralysis and cerebral palsy, but they outperform expectations and bring joy. "It's crazy how resilient they are," Steffen said. "Look at the joy they give to their people. They deserve a chance." They certainly do. They deserve our love, and we are the better for loving them.

We also learn from the resilience of which Steffen speaks. Some of their conditions slow them down, but not too much. An 8-week-old Chihuahua named Flower gets around on her front legs alone, but she will possibly have a wheelchair soon, thanks to the Cape Girardeau Career and Technology Center, which might be able to use a 3-D printer to make one. She's not slowing down!

Then there's Huli the Shiba Inu, whose heart murmur hasn't stopped her. When adopted, her new owners thought it was a "hospice situation." But her new family showered her with love, and "now, she's healthy." Her owner Ted said, "She's just full of energy." He added, "I don't know what we'd do without her now."

A video of these dogs has been viewed more than 41,000 times on Facebook.

You may be contemplating adding a pet to your family. Consider these special ones. Steffen admits that they may require a little more effort, but they're worth it. "They're more fun," she said. How can you not fall in love with them?

"I think people bond more with the special ones," Steffen said. "And we specialize in special."

Visit www.facebook.com/macthepitbull to get more information.

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